Get Inspired - The Erven's Find The Arc
March 27th, 2016
According to Halina Erven, her son Adam has a sixth sense for judging people. In the family’s two year search for a day program, there were no programs that lived up to their expectations and where Adam wanted to stay.
Per state protocol, the Division of Developmental Disabilities only provided Halina with a list of programs within Morris County, where the family resides. Yet, the Essex County line was just a few miles from their home. So, Halina went out on her own and found The Arc of Essex County’s Livingston Day Program.
“We took the tour with Melissa and at the end, Adam told me to go home. He was staying,” said Halina. “We knew it was a perfect fit because of the staff - they are very reassuring, caring, and they nurture the program attendees.”
Adam looks forward to going to the YMCA with his day program for basketball each week. He takes pride in his work with Meals on Wheels. And, through attending computer classes with his program at the local library, Adam has learned how to do things on his iPad his parents never thought possible.
“When I pick Adam up after program, he tells me he wants more. If there are weather advisories on TV, he will hide the remote because he is afraid he won’t be able to go to program,” laughed Halina. “The day is not long enough for him because there are so many activities to choose from. It is a perfect match.”
Since attending The Arc of Essex County’s Livingston Day Program, Halina and her family have seen Adam grow and become more independent. Before attending program, Adam was nonverbal, relying on sign language, gestures, and a communication device. Now his mom says he is constantly making noises at home. He knows that when he gets to program, he has to hang up his coat and put his lunch away.
“For me, as a parent, it is a blessing to see he is going out in the community,” said Halina. “It’s a very important factor. Even though he is disabled, I still want him to experience life. By attending The Arc of Essex County Day Program, he is able to do just that.”